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Hélène W. Holocaust testimony (HVT-2829) interviewed by Claude Morhange and Josette Zarka

Oral History | Fortunoff Collection ID: HVT-2829

Videotape testimony of Hélène W., who was born in Warsaw, Poland in 1927. She recalls emigration to Paris in 1933; visiting relatives in Poland; her father's internment in Beaune-la-Rolande in 1941; hiding him after his release; her mother's and brother's internment in the Vélodrome d'hiver; begging a German official to release them; their return home; her mother's arrest; their final moment together; receiving food from neighbors; her Resistance work; her arrest in February 1944 (her brother escaped); internment at Drancy; deportation to Auschwitz/Birkenau; extreme hunger, cold, and humiliation; caring for a friend who died; sharing smuggled food with friends; being beaten by a Blockältester; transfer to Canada Kommando where she regained strength; a friend who encouraged and helped her; death marches to Ravensbrück, Malchow, and Dora; escaping with her friend; hiding on a farm; liberation by Soviet troops; their separation at an American camp; traveling to Bourges with OSE; reunion with her brother (her parents did not survive); and her teaching work. Mrs. W. discusses details of camp life and her state of mind; the importance to survival of prisoners helping each other; and, after the war, wanting to share her story, but remaining silent when others would not listen.

Author/Creator
W., Hélène, 1927-
Published
Paris, France : Témoignages pour mémoire, 1993
Interview Date
November 21, 1993.
Language
French
Copies
2 copies: 3/4 in. dub; and 1/2 in. VHS with time coding.
Cite As
Hélène W. Holocaust Testimony (HVT-2829). Fortunoff Video Archive for Holocaust Testimonies, Yale University Library.